Islamic Relief UK launches its Ramadan appeal
As Muslims around the world prepare to observe the holy month of Ramadan in May, Islamic Relief UK is launching its Ramadan Appeal this week to support those who face a daily fight for survival due to poverty, famine, disasters and conflict.
All donations from the British public, up to £2 million, will be matched by the UK government. While the money raised from the public will help people in over 30 countries, including Syria, Yemen and Pakistan, money from the UK Government will fund Islamic Relief’s work to support people in Ethiopia to access life-saving water.
Tufail Hussain, Interim Director of Islamic Relief UK, says: ‘Islamic Relief was founded 35 years ago this year, in response to the devastating famine in Ethiopia. While there have been improvements in the lives of vulnerable people all over the world since that time – thanks in part to the work of charities and governments alike – climate change means that the frequency and severity of droughts is increasing. The people who suffer most are those who rely on the land to make a living.’
‘We are grateful that the UK Government is supporting our Ramadan appeal so that together we can help farmers prepare for drought in Ethiopia.’
When drought hits, the health of livestock deteriorates, exposing them to disease and ill health. The lower price for a sick and weak animal means that farmers have less money to buy food. Water sources dry up and farmers need to travel further and further in search of water for both livestock and their families.
Islamic Relief’s innovative project in the Somali region of Ethiopia will benefit nearly 20,000 people through a livestock insurance and technology programme. Farmers will pay an insurance premium during the wet season when they can afford to do so. If the insurance is triggered as a result of low pasture and water, funds will be released so farmers can buy fodder for their livestock.
Drones and satellites will be used to map pasture and water sources, then images will be sent to farmers on their mobile phones, so they know where to get water in times of scarcity. Community members will be trained how to protect their livestock from illness, and dams will be constructed in order to provide water to drought-affected communities.